ACU welcomed 18 new football players to the big country in their inaugural Division One recruiting class, including a talented group of offensive playmakers.
The two quarterbacks head coach Ken Collums and his staff will welcome to the fold have dual threat abilities that the Wildcats have not seen in quite some time.
Will Weathers played his high school ball at Brook Hill Academy in Tyler, while Kade Munden took snaps for China Springs High School in Waco.
“I put a premium on finding guys with the ability to run and move around because we’re probably going to add some quarterback run concepts to what we do offensively as we move up,” Collums said. “Both of those guys bring that ability to the table.”
The program also found three running backs to take the rock in the future. De’andre Brown from Lewisville, Randy Gober from La Vega High School in Waco, and transfer Herschel Simms from Abilene High School.
Simms will not be allowed to play in 2013 because of NCAA transfer regulations, but will suit up for the Wildcats in the 2014 season.
“All three of those guys really anted to be here, and each of them are upper-level running backs,” Collums said. “I’m looking forward to getting them all on the field and seeing what we’ve got.”
The ‘Cats also brought in a wide receiver from Lancaster that played a couple years at nearby Cisco Junior College. Cedric Gilbert is a 6’2” 220 pounder that will cause problems for defensive backs right away.
“We haven’t had a wide receiver like Cedric, and we’ve had some great ones,” Collums said. “His ability to adjust to the ball will give the quarterback freedom to get the ball out there and let Cedric go get it.”
The bulk of the offensive recruiting class for ACU was offensive linemen. The ‘Cats will welcome five new faces to the O-line, including high school teammates Austin Hisler and Riley Mayfield from Cedar Park High School.
The other three linemen are Sam Fodale from Evangel Christian Academy, Chance Rieken from Comfort High School and Hayden Wall from Hallsville.
“What we went after in this recruiting class was length and athleticism, and we got that,” offensive line coach Sam Collins said. “All those guys are great competitors and they all want to be a part of an O-line that is really good.”
Now that recruiting is over, the coaching staff is in the process of preparing for spring practice, where they will start building for their first Division One football game in the fall.
“Once recruiting is over what you have to do is start investing in the guys you have on your team,” Collins said. “Our biggest goal is to start coaching those guys and developing them. Make sure they are doing well in their classes as well as developing them athletically.”